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Old 06-06-2012, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
349 posts, read 539,222 times
Reputation: 280

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Sheena,

First, Hi neighbor! (insert manic waving from Pittsburgh)

When I take something like this topic into consideration, there are many factors involved... not just low cost housing or high salaries, but also job market, school districts, and the area itself- is the upkeep well? Crime rate? Poverty?

I think there's a lot that goes into what you're asking for, in regards to 'least expensive place to live'... because trust me, that's what I"m looking for. LOL But again, the job market, and/or the commute time/distance have to be considered. Sure, I could buy a trailer on the skirts of Pittsburgh for pretty cheap, or rent a tiny apartment in the city, but what is my commute time- how much am I paying in gas? Wear and tear on the car? Or could I easily find a new job?

See what I mean?

And I'd love to move to your area, I've heard nothing but good things about it... however the commute to Downtown Pittsburgh everyday would be a real PITA.
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Old 06-06-2012, 06:44 AM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,134 posts, read 20,760,860 times
Reputation: 8292
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
Nominations for the least expensive places to live in the US?

I will nominate where I live - Wilkes-Barre and Scranton PA.

It NEVER appears on any of those stupid lists - it seems they only list places in Texas or Oklahoma.

Also, $ 200,000 homes are not inexpensive to me.

So, any places with relatively high salaries and a LOW cost of living.

What if all Americans boycotted expensive destinations?
If everyone follows your advice demaand will go up and they will no longer be inexpensive
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Old 06-06-2012, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Location: Location
6,343 posts, read 7,792,879 times
Reputation: 18564
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
If everyone follows your advice demaand will go up and they will no longer be inexpensive
That's the truth. Our very own Pocono Mountain area was proof of that. And we don't have a lot of very high-paying jobs in NEPA except for professionals. If you're not in that class, you're going to be in one of the service industries - retail sales, wait-staff, telemarketer - which makes it hard to support even the least expensive places.

Some people don't know when to leave well-enough alone.
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Old 06-06-2012, 10:08 AM
 
18,856 posts, read 31,600,659 times
Reputation: 26107
How about where I live? Wages low, very low. Rent and property very high. And why bother to buy in this job market? Who knows how long your job will last? Why tie yourself down and not be able to move up?
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Old 06-06-2012, 11:51 AM
 
Location: The New England part of Ohio
18,586 posts, read 23,117,825 times
Reputation: 48552
I will. not sure why this post has inspired so much ire.

A bit about my background - grew up in an upper middle class suburb. Went to college and for some reason, not sure why; I returned to the suburban area in which I was raised.

My guess - I knew of no other way to live. Now I do.

Why boycott overpriced suburbs and urban areas? because if we do, the price will fall, and they will learn that $ 450,000 for an architecturally undistinguished 3 or 4 bedroom home in a pricy 'burb is just plain unacceptable.

There is a movement in this country of which you may not be aware, that is called "Rust Belt Chic" - people are reclaiming the once abandoned North East, Mid West, and Mid-Atlantic Rust Belt Cities and re-purposing them.

But my post was clear. I wanted to know about the least expensive, livable and affordable. Historic architecture, history in general, art, architecture, and a sort of funky, interesting vibe - with a low cost of living .

Is that something that you understand?
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Old 06-06-2012, 12:08 PM
 
Location: The New England part of Ohio
18,586 posts, read 23,117,825 times
Reputation: 48552
Quote:
Originally Posted by theatergypsy View Post
Since I live in the same area, I'm tempted to say, "Don't tell!!" It's very affordable to live here unless you have appetites that your income won't support.

As far as boycotting expensive destinations, witness what happened when the influx of NY/NJ people opted to move to the eastern Pocono communities, only to find that the commute for work in the city was a killer; that more residents meant need for more public services, which increased those low taxes which drew people here in the first place. Also, many didn't realize that the amenities they enjoyed in their prior homes were provided by independent contractors in the new location and they had to budget for refuse pick-up and snow plowing of their access roads and driveways. New schools had to be built, increasing taxes on all the residents, not just the new folks. Now, realizing that the cost of gas, car maintenance and travel time eats into that low-cost living, many have opted to get out, leaving empty homes and empty schools. Those nice new schools have seen a dramatic decrease in enrollment, to the point where there is now discussion of closing some.

So it's quite alright with me if Wilkes-Barre is off the radar. Even though the casino revenue hasn't yet abolished the property tax as promised, I can still afford my assessments. Sadly, the proposed tax increases in Lackawanna County/Scranton may be driving many homeowners out of that city. Some of them may be coming to the W-B area. Let's just keep out little secret, shall we?

LOL!!! I think this is funny but I am not worried about an influx of up-scale, innovative,and enthusiastic, people who can contribute to maintain and improve this area. people without axes to grind, or the sick need to put the area in which they live, down. I like the Valley, but it needs some help.

And as much as I love it, it needs to attract some new blood in order to thrive. People on the NE PA forum scare people off.

We could use some productive people here. Our taxes, compared to anywhere else - for example the Poconos, are pittance. I can't complain. Home ownership is very possible here. The surrounding natural beauty is awesome, as is the architecture.

Last edited by sheena12; 06-06-2012 at 12:12 PM.. Reason: needed to add something
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Old 06-06-2012, 12:24 PM
 
6,620 posts, read 4,563,166 times
Reputation: 13253
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
Why boycott overpriced suburbs and urban areas? because if we do, the price will fall, and they will learn that $ 450,000 for an architecturally undistinguished 3 or 4 bedroom home in a pricy 'burb is just plain unacceptable.
Sure, housing prices, in say NYC, would fall if everyone decided that Rust Belt cities were preferable places to live and moved. But, the other result would be that the demand for housing, education and other services in the current Rust Belt cities would drive up the COL in those areas to the current equivalent of NYC and NYC would become a Rust Belt city. How is that better?

I'm glad you love where you live and I understand that you live there based on things beyond the COL. You enjoy the vibe of your city. You like the arts scene etc. You even like the "rusty" look and feel of it. But, there are valid reasons other folks love to live where they do. They love things about their towns based on their personal preferences and styles. It's insulting to those folks when you condemn their choices as "just plain unacceptable".

FYI - I took a look at the COL indexes for your area. Housing is lower (82 rating), but taxes more than make up for that with a rating of 132.
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Old 06-06-2012, 01:04 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,698 posts, read 23,566,607 times
Reputation: 35443
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
If everyone follows your advice demaand will go up and they will no longer be inexpensive
So true. When I first moved to Portland Oregon over thirty years ago, it was very inexpensive to live here. Now it's outrageous. Salaries are low and prices are high.

My choice for relocation is Cleveland Ohio. So I will put that on the OP's list. I have friends living there and have visited several times. It's a lot less expensive than many places and has a lot more to offer than people give it credit for. I don't think it deserves the negative reputation it has.

I know the weather is not so great but that is the least of my considerations.

The only problem, as you say, that when people discover cities with a more reasonable COL these cities can be taken over and become another high-priced place.
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Old 06-06-2012, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Location: Location
6,343 posts, read 7,792,879 times
Reputation: 18564
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheena12 View Post
I will. not sure why this post has inspired so much ire.

A bit about my background - grew up in an upper middle class suburb. Went to college and for some reason, not sure why; I returned to the suburban area in which I was raised.

My guess - I knew of no other way to live. Now I do.

Why boycott overpriced suburbs and urban areas? because if we do, the price will fall, and they will learn that $ 450,000 for an architecturally undistinguished 3 or 4 bedroom home in a pricy 'burb is just plain unacceptable.

There is a movement in this country of which you may not be aware, that is called "Rust Belt Chic" - people are reclaiming the once abandoned North East, Mid West, and Mid-Atlantic Rust Belt Cities and re-purposing them.

But my post was clear. I wanted to know about the least expensive, livable and affordable. Historic architecture, history in general, art, architecture, and a sort of funky, interesting vibe - with a low cost of living .

Is that something that you understand?
Sheena, my dictionary defines ire as intense anger; wrath. I don't see the same in these responses to your OP. Instead, I see rebuttal to your desire to encourage folks to emigrate to areas because of the low COL, simply pointing out what happens when an area becomes suddenly "desirable". Certainly not ire. I wasn't the only one to take that position.
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Old 06-06-2012, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,698 posts, read 23,566,607 times
Reputation: 35443
I don't think that people who are affluent enough to be able to afford the more expensive areas are going to want to move to less expensive areas.

And those who cannot afford the more expensive areas can't live there anyway. So who will be doing the boycotting?
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